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Concerns raised over Welsh Government’s £6m airport capital injection

A £6 million ‘cash injection’ into Cardiff Airport has led to concerns from the Welsh Conservatives.

Shadow Economy Secretary – Russell George – said the investment “raised eyebrows”, suggesting that the situation at the government-owned airport may not be as comfortable as ministers have suggested.

A statement released by Economy Secretary, Ken Skates, yesterday revealed the decision to “acquire an additional £6m of shares” in Cardiff Airport. According to Mr Skates, the investment builds on the “significant success” achieved by the airport in recent years.

Just weeks ago, the airport’s Chief Executive, Roger Lewis, revealed plans to attract private sector investment in the airport to pay for a new terminal.

The Economy Secretary, at the time, also confirmed that the Welsh Government expect private sector investment to form part of the airport’s “long term masterplan”.

However, Shadow Economy Secretary, Russell George, said:

“If the outlook for the airport is as positive as the Welsh Government claims, you have to ask why they’ve been unable to secure private investment.

“Frankly, a cash injection of this kind is usually taken as a sign of a company in financial distress – not a company on the up and up.

“We all want to see the airport succeed, but we have been repeatedly told that the route to success is through private equity. Now we see another cash injection of taxpayer cash.

“It’s not the long term master plan we were sold by the Cabinet Secretary in January.

“Welsh Conservatives will continue to support the Chief Executive in his efforts to make the airport a success, but Welsh taxpayers will understandably roll their eyes at news of another bailout by the Welsh Government.”